Bicyclists encounter twine strung across Rio Grande Trail
October 28, 2009
PITKIN COUNTY – Twine strung tautly enough across the Rio Grande Trail to injure a speeding bicyclist has prompted an investigation by the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office.
Bicyclists Ian and Barbara Long of Snowmass Village encountered the orange twine, strung at about chest height, on Sunday afternoon at about 3:30 p.m. The twine was not there when the pair traveled through earlier in the afternoon, on a ride from Old Snowmass to Carbondale and back, Ian Long said.
No one was hurt, but the Longs reported the incident to the Roaring Fork Transportation Authority, which handles maintenance of the trail corridor in the lower valley. The obstruction was placed across the trail about a quarter-mile downvalley from the Snowmass Conoco.
John Armstrong, county open space and trails ranger, received a report of the incident from RFTA and turned it over to authorities.
“It’s beyond criminal mischief,” Armstrong said.
“It would have knocked me off my bike if I wasn’t paying attention,” Long said. “Someone out there has a sick sense of humor.”
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The sheriff’s office will view the incident as an attempted assault, according to Deputy Hugh Zuker.
“It’s essentially clothes-lining someone,” he said. “We’re going to take it seriously. Attempted assault is what we’re thinking – it’s an attempt to hurt somebody.”
Zuker urged anyone who has information about the culprit to call authorities at 920-5300.